Dealing With Through-Balls

Welcome to the Goalkeeping Newsletter.  Today’s topic deals with through balls.

One of the most difficult things for a keeper to do is deal with through balls.  Some of the decisions that have to be made include:

  • Should I go outside the box and clear the ball?
  • Should I stay inside the 18 and let the ball come to me?
  • Is the attacker going to win the ball?
  • Is my teammate going to win the ball?
  • If my teammate wins the ball should he pass it back, keep it or clear it?

While it’s impossible to recreate all of the situations (and variables) that might arise in a game, we can work on recreating some.

Start with a server with a ball around 50 yards from goal.  An attacker and a defender are the same distance but on a different angle and a keeper is in goal.

The server plays a through ball toward the top of the 18 and as soon as it’s played the attacker and defender and keeper are live.

If the keeper can win the ball he should go and win the ball.  If he thinks his teammate (the yellow player in this situation) can win the ball he then starts giving directions whether to pass the ball back, to clear it or to turn with the ball.

The server can play different types of balls (bouncing, hard, short etc) and can vary the angle of the pass as well as the angle of the runs

It’s important that the field players understand this is a training activity because if they aren’t careful it’s easy to create a dangerous situation for the keeper and others.

Have a great day!


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